I invited Doug to respond to BBB’s blog, ‘Is Christianity Dead?’ which you’ll find re-blogged here. In the next few days I’ll follow Doug with some reflections on particular points raised by BBB, who is one of our most faithful readers. Over to Doug.
I recently read the thought provoking lamentations of a concerned Catholic writer who raised the question “Is Christianity dead?” Despite a litany of bad news ranging from a half empty church at Christmas Midnight Mass, to Pew (no pun intended) Research findings of decreasing church attendance, prayer, and living the faith, she answers her own question with a resounding, yet less than inspiring, “No”.
Her contention is that, “Christianity is not dead. It is alive in our hearts. In our homes. In our prayers.” But while she concedes Christianity is not dead, she doesn’t seem convinced that it might not be gravely, or even terminally ill. She sees inviting others to fill the empty parish seats as one way to save Christianity from certain death.
No, Christianity (A.K.A the Church and the Body of Christ) is not dead, nor is it dying. It cannot, and will not die. Christ told Peter (Matthew 16:17), the Church was built upon on the rock of Peter’s faith, “and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it”, and as the Prophet foretold about the strength of the Church entrusted to Christ (Isaiah 22:22), “…what he opens, no one will shut, what he shuts, no one will open.”
While evangelizing is the baptismal obligation demanded by God, if we fail at this mission because of our fallen nature, God will still prevail and the Church will not die. Take comfort in the fact that our heavenly father has “set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed…” (Daniel 2:44).
Pilgrims in the rain, Krakow, August 2016.